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Old 31 Dec 2009, 02:01 pm
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Posts: 105
Default 2003 Honda Pilot Makes Straining Sound When Turning Steering Wheel?

It makes a mechanical straining sound when turning the wheel, especially when cold and most noticeable at low speeds.

Is the power steering pump going?

Something else?

Thanks for all the input.

I should have said that the car has 96K miles and the serpentine has yet to be replaced (no wear, not due until 105K).

I checked the PS fluid. It is right at the lower limit line.
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Old 31 Dec 2009, 02:16 pm
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Either the power steering pump is low on fluid or is going out. Check the fluid first.
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Old 31 Dec 2009, 02:31 pm
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 58

Time for a new serpentine belt.

Unless you ae talking about when your steering wheel is at Full lock..THEN serpentine belt, or PS relief valve.

There is no need to turn to full lock! you get just as much "turn" if your wheel is backed off from full lock a half an inch!

WHEN have you last replaced that belt??

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Old 31 Dec 2009, 02:46 pm
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I think the power steering pump is on its way out.
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Old 31 Dec 2009, 03:01 pm
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Sounds to me like your low on power steering fluid. Quick & simple to check. Pop the hood follow the belt to what looks like a plastic bottle the cap on the bottle will say power steering and what type of fluid to add most likely dextron or automatic transmission fluid.

Unscrew the cap. On the inside of the cap will be a small plastic dipstick.

Just look at the level on the stick to see if you need to add more. You can also check your owners manual for instructions.
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Old 31 Dec 2009, 03:31 pm
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 44

The power steering reservoir has a filter inside, most of the V6 model after 2002 are doing this.. First if the fluid is low add Honda p/s fluid, do not add another fluid it will damage the system. Honda does not use trans fluid or any other fluid on the p/s system. If the belt is loose or if u can see something abnormal, like the p/s pump pulley wobbling or something like that, take care of that first. Once the fluid level is normal between the max and min lines and everything else looks good if the noise still there buy a new p/s fluid reservoir , inlet hose and inlet o ring. With the time the filter gets plugged and fluid does not flow properly making that kind of noise. You can try to remove that p/s reservoir and cleaned it with something but the filter is plastic and most of the cleaners and solvents will melt the filter and plugged the whole system. NOT GOOD. After that if u still have a noise that u replace the p/s pump, you need a new filter with the new pump so it not like u wasted your money on that filter anyway. I hope this helps and Good luck!
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